Black Swan Records and the Political Economy of Music
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Exercise 2: Music, Sound, and Race


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Born in 1895 in Atlanta, Trixie Smith came to New York around 1915. She became a featured performer on the traveling African American vaudeville circuit. She made her first recordings for Black Swan in 1922 after winning a prestigious blues singing contest at the Manhattan Casino in New York. Her recording career waned after the mid-1920s, but she continued to perform on stage (in musical revues and on Broadway) and in several films. She died in 1943.

Lyrics: "My Man Rocks Me (With One Steady Roll)"

I feel so happy, I have a smile, [both all the while]
Since my man came back home to stay, night and day
He's made life snappy . . .

My man rocks me, with one steady roll
There's no slippin' when he wants take hold
I looked at the clock, and the clock struck one
I said now, Daddy, ain't we got fun
Oh, he was rockin' me, with one steady roll

My man rocks me, with one steady roll
There's no slippin' when he wants take hold
I looked at the clock, and the clock struck six
I said, Daddy, y'know I like those tricks
Cause he was rockin' me, with one steady roll

My man rocks me, with one steady roll
There's no slippin when he takes hold
I looked at the clock, and the clock struck ten
I said, glory, Amen
My man was rockin' me, with one steady roll

J. Berni Barbour, "My Man Rocks Me (With One Steady Roll)," performed by Trixie Smith, My Man Rocks Me (With One Steady Roll) (phonograph record; Black Swan 14127; 1922)